Plastiq Issue with American Express Solved

Plastiq Issue with American Express Solved

As a follow up to my post, Plastiq and the Manufactured Spend Nightmare Scenario, I reached out to Plastiq to find out if the issue was resolved.  As we are about to take off on our round-the-world trip in about a month, making sure the mortgage was taken care of was high up on my list of things to do.

For those that aren’t in the loop, American Express has stopped allowing new mortgage payments to be paid through Plastiq.  In an effort to stop any new mortgage payments, AMEX used a broad brush and accidentally stopped all payments from being processed by Plastiq, regardless of the category.

This issue has now been resolved (as of an hour ago actually) between Plastiq and American Express so payments will go through as long as they don’t fall into the following categories:

  • Commercial Rent
  • Auto Loans
  • Payroll
  • Business Services
  • Mortgage Payments

What About Previously Scheduled Mortgage Payments?

If you had previously schedule mortgage payments and didn’t make any changes to the schedule, your future payments will go through.  However, if you try to schedule a new mortgage payment, it will be declined.

What Are Business Services?

Everything in the list above makes sense, however, there’s a big question mark around what Business Services are.  When I asked Plastiq for clarification, they told me that any bill that is being paid on behalf of a business is NOT eligible to be paid by Plastiq if you want to use American Express.

This could be paying the cable bill, the electric bill or anything else associated with business services.

Apparently, this “change was necessary with AMEX. American Express requested an enhanced review of the way that Plastiq ensures its payments adhere to their network guidelines.”

This obviously isn’t the greatest news for companies that use Plastiq for bill payments.

As a point of clarification, this is American Express issue only.  If you want to use your Visa or MasterCard for Business Services, you should not have any issues.

Conclusion

If you had previously scheduled payments for your mortgage with AMEX, your charges will now continue to go through without issue, which is great news.  If you have a business and are running expenses through your AMEX credit card … you may want to contact Plastiq to see what your options are.


Also published on Medium.

8 Comments
  1. What renovations for a house? Does that fall under business services? I have a fairly big cost coming up for my house Reno’s… Do you have other suggestions on how to earn points on this?

    1. Hi Brian,

      This should not fall under Business Services unless you are a home builder. For your renos, it relly depends on where you shop. For example, if you use Lowe’s, here’s a neat trick.

      Get the American Express Gold Business Card. With the card, you can choose 3 preferred suppliers and those suppliers will get you 2x Membership Rewards. To make things even sweeter, you can make your purchase online through Great Canadian Rebates as you are able to earn cash back on your online purchases. For Lowe’s it is currently 2% and with Home Depot it’s currently 2.5%.

      With the Lowe’s example, if you purchased $1,000 worth of material, you would receive 2,000 Membership Rewards AND $20 cash back! Not bad, especially if you consider that your renovations are likely to cost more than $1,000.

      Hope that helps. Cheers

      Jayce

      1. Thanks for the insight Jayce! I should have been more clear as well.. for the renos I want to use a General Contractor to do the work.

  2. Do prepayments count as mortgage payment? Or they just don’t want regular mortgage payments to be made?

    1. I think that if it’s a prepayment to a mortgage, the same rules would apply (as in not allowed). You can always check with Plastiq but I’m 99% sure. Cheers

      Jayce

  3. Hi Jayce,
    Can you explain why you use their services with a 2.5% fee? Was it only to get a welcome bonus or the CPM is good enough to keep using their services?

    1. Hi Rachel,

      Thanks for your question.

      I use Plastiq because it is a guaranteed, no-worry way to manufacture some miles. I have the American Express Gold Business which allows you to set 3 preferred vendors, of which Plastiq is an option. If you have Plastiq as a preferred vendor, you get 2x Membership Rewards for every dollar spent. I also signed up my mortgage payment when Plastiq had a discount on their fee so I pay 2.25% on my payments, rather than the traditional 2.5%.

      I won’t tell you exactly how much my mortgage is but the math works regardless of what it is. Let’s say my mortgage is $2,000 a month.

      I would pay $45 in fees and my $2,000 mortgage for a total charge on my AMEX of $2,045. This would yield me 4,090 Membership Rewards. If I were to look at it a per point perspective (aka CPM), I would be paying 1.1 cents per mile ($45 / 4,090 * 100).

      My general rule of thumb is that I try to keep my costs to less than 1 CPM and while I am slightly over, I am guaranteed almost 50,000 Membership Rewards per year (assuming my mortgage is $2,000/month). So as long as I cash in my points for over 1 CPM, I am getting free value.

      I hope that clears up my rationale and helps you decide if it’s worth it for you. Cheers.

      Jayce

  4. 1- Ok, I get it! I was considering as a benefit only the MR of the 45$ fees…
    I have 2 mortgages and it’s really sad that I can’t use this opportunity :o(
    If there’s a way to sneak in, let me know…
    It looks like MBNA WE is the only card that can be use at 2%, but it’s a cash back…
    2- You still have a 2.25% fee while it’s now 2.5% for Amex, so is it true that we have to sign up when there is a discount fee to lock it in?
    3- If the answer is no, do you have a Plastiq referral code? I have 6K to spend, so any MS techniques would be appreciated…

    Thanks

    Rachel

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